As local bakeries kick off king cake season starting on Jan. 6, some launch new, exciting creations for the 2020 Carnival season.
From Carnival staples, like Caluda’s Bakery, to newer players, like King Cake Hub, bakeries are making sure to keep customers interested with something new.
Here’s a look at some of the new king cakes on the block for the 2020 Carnival season.
Each year, Gracious Bakery typically surprises king cake lovers with new, specialty flavors. This year, the team debuts two specialty king cakes: Mardi Gras Moon Pie and Cherries Jubilee.
Gracious Bakery hopes its new Mardi Gras Moon Pie King Cake will be a hit with king cake lovers this season. Inspired by the Southern confection, the king cake is filled with chocolate schmear, graham crumbs and chocolate chips. Toppings of chocolate glaze, marshmallow fluff, graham streusel and sprinkles finish off the king cake.
Gracious Bakery’s Cherries Jubilee King Cake features cherry and rum filling with a glaze of white icing and stripes of cherry purée. The king cake is finished with a special touch of gold sprinkles and chocolate pearls for decoration.
The bakery also brings back its Queen Cake with almond paste and King Cake with Valrhona chocolate.
Gracious Bakery has three locations in the New Orleans area.
Old school versus new school: What’s your pick? District Donuts offers an Old School and New School versions of king cake for 2020.
The old school king cake is a throwback to simple brioche king cakes. Soft, dense dough is lightly drizzled with icing and packed with festive sugar sprinkles and a little cherry on top.
The new school king cake is a Danish, croissant-style cake. The rich and buttery dough is lightly spiced with cinnamon and a touch of cream cheese.
Bywater Bakery incorporates a signature twist on classic sweets into its cutting-edge king cakes.
For 2020, the bakery debuts three new flavors Raspberry True King Cake, Azul Dulce Blueberry King Cake, and Pineapple Passion Fruit King Cake. The bakery also brings back its savory line with Crawfish, Boudin and Spinach and Artichoke king cakes.
Breads on Oak
The vegan experts at Breads on Oak add some new flavors to Carnival while also opening a new location. After seven years on Oak Street, the bakery swings open a second location downtown at 222 Carondelet Street.
This season, Breads on Oak features new flavors like Strawberry Rum Cream Cheese, Mixed Berries and Brandy Almond Cream and Mocha Cream.
Chamain O’Mahony, who owns the bakery with her husband Sean, says she even has another surprise for king cake lovers this season. The bakery plans to unveil another new king cake soon featuring local satsuma cream.
Breads on Oak has become known for its organic, vegan king cakes. Even the Mardi Gras colors on top are made of natural plant-based ingredients, with an almond in lieu of a plastic baby. The bakery also breaks the mold by infusing alcohol into their adult double filled cakes.
Caluda’s King Cake
Many foodies may know chef John Caluda for his signature crawfish strudel and white chocolate bread pudding during Jazz Fest. Caluda also heads his pastry team at Caluda’s King Cake in Harahan.
The team has teased a new Chantilly King Cake dropping this year on their Facebook page but hasn’t set a date for its release. One version of this Chantilly King Cake features fruit inside and on top of the cake. The other version only comes with fruit in the inside.
Caluda’s will also push out an interesting king cake flavor of the week throughout the 2020 season. Pricing for the decadent flavors range from $57.95 to $62.95 via the website.
Here’s the list of 2020 flavors of the week:
- Week 1 (Jan. 6 – Jan. 11): Oreo Cream Cheese
- Week 2 (Jan. 13 – Jan. 18): Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough
- Week 3 (Jan. 20 – Jan. 25): Maple Bacon Praline
- Week 4 (Jan. 27 – Feb. 1): Bananas Foster
- Week 5 (Feb. 3 – Feb. 8): White Chocolate Bread Pudding
- Week 6 (Feb. 10 – Feb. 15): Cherry Almond
- Week 7 (Feb. 17 – Feb. 22): Blueberry Cheese Cake
La Petite Sophie
The French pastry shop in River Ridge goes old school with its new offering for 2020. For the first time this year, La Petite Sophie pays homage to South France with a traditional brioche galette des rois that is common to Southern France, but not seen very often in the U.S.
Unlike the almond and puff pastry galette des rois that is more common, this brioche version features French candied fruit to represent the Mardi Gras colors. Candied sour cherries, a mixture of candied orange zests and lemon zest and candied Angelica — a native European herb — is used to create the purple, green and gold. The traditional king cake is finished with Swedish pearl sugar for a crunchy element and a light Satsuma and orange blossom glaze.
La Petite Sophie will also feature four other king cakes this season including the more common puff pastry galette des rois, a New Orleans-style king cake and a king cake version of the bakery’s popular pastry, Kouign Amann.
La Boulangerie & Cochon Butcher
Executive pastry chef Maggie Scales of Link Restaurant Group will offer apple almond and chocolate as new additions for 2020. These varieties will join the traditional cinnamon and the famous “Elvis” filled with peanut butter, banana and topped with house-cured bacon, marshmallow and traditional Mardi Gras sprinkles.
La Boulangerie will also be selling a traditional French Galette des Rois, which are two rounds of puff pastry filled with almond cream. The Galette des Rois are topped with a small porcelain feve, and come in two sizes: 8” ($25) and 10” ($40).
All of chef Scales’ cakes contain a petite pink pig as their signature “baby,” in homage to Cochon’s even-toed ungulate.
King cakes can be purchased at both Cochon Butcher and La Boulangerie. The traditional New Orleans-style king cakes are created in two sizes: a 6-inch individual ($9) and a 9-inch large ($30), which serves up to 12 people. The Elvis will be sold daily by the slice or as a large special order cake ($40) with a required 24-hours notice.
The Station Coffee Shop & Bakery
The Station Coffee Shop and Bakery will also roll out some tasty king cakes this year. A new offering for 2020 is a bananas foster king cake. The bakery will also bring back its savory muffuletta king cake and “kouign” cake — a kouign-amann rolled in cinnamon sugar. Cakes are available by the slice, or customers can place an order for a whole cake.
King Cake Hub
King Cake Hub, a king cake retailer located in Mid-City, offers some of the area’s most coveted king cakes at one convenient location.
In addition to the bakery partners’ offerings, King Cake Hub partners with Caluda’s Bakery for an exclusive new flavor, the Dragon Claw King Cake. Dragon Claw features a flaky laminate Danish dough and a cream-cheese icing.
“You may think that you have had your favorite king cake, but you haven’t– yet,” owner Will Samuels said in a release.
Only 50 of these cakes will be made per day and will be available exclusively at King Cake Hub.
Other exclusive cakes include new Cream Cheese and Praline-filled versions of last year’s best-selling Epiphany King Cake, created in partnership with Gambino’s Bakery, as well as a Chocolate Cream Cheese from West Bank favorite Hi Do Bakery.
Joe’s Cafe debuts a new king cake flavor called Joe’s Original Turtle Pecan King Cake. The creation combines caramel Holland cream, chocolate ganache and roasted pecans.
“Whether you’re a King Cake purist or you’re open to irreverent experiments with the most famous dessert in New Orleans, it’s impossible to resist the classic flavor of everyone’s favorite candy: The Turtle,” a spokesperson for Joe’s Cafe said in a release.
The family-run business also celebrates 30 years with locations in Marrero, Westwego, Terrytown, Metairie and Kenner.
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